National Association of State Directors of Career
Technical Education Consortium (NASDCTEc)

Posts Tagged ‘career pathways’

Share Ideas on Career Pathways through New “Innovation Forum” Blog

Tuesday, November 15th, 2011

An increasingly competitive economy is forcing Career Technical Education (CTE) and workforce leaders to “do more with less.” A new resource launched by the U.S. Departments of Labor, Education (through the Office of Vocational and Adult Education), and Health and Human Services this week encourages workforce leaders and partners to maximize their efforts by sharing innovative ideas and best practices on career pathways.

According to the Department of Labor, the resource, called the “Innovation Forum,” is geared towards organizations serving adults and youth, and was designed as a platform for sharing ideas on “new ways to govern, invest and manage funds, and deliver services.”

The forum is set up as a blog, and participants are encouraged to submit blog posts and to comment on posted blogs. The most recent post, “Career Pathways Come to Life,” highlights the recent National Career Pathways Network Conference in Florida. Read more about how to submit a blog post here.

Kara Herbertson, Education Policy Analyst

By Kara in News, Resources
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Fall Meeting: Being an Innovative Leader During Tough Times

Monday, October 31st, 2011

Given the tough fiscal climate, states are being asked to do more with less. During the opening session at NASDCTEc’s Fall Meeting, states shared how they are continuing to expand CTE and be innovative in their approach, despite funding cuts and dwindling resources.

John Fischer, State Director of CTE in Vermont, spoke about a consortium of New England states leveraging their resources to ensure that high schools graduates are prepared for college and careers in the 21st century. For example, partner states are working together to build flexible pathway and proficiency based graduation models together.

Sherry Key, State Director of CTE in Alabama, shared the work being done by her state on a commission that Alabama has created to look at the future of CTE. The Career and Technical Education Commission will review the status of secondary CTE programs as well as the needs of employers in the state, and then make recommendations on how to strengthen and support CTE programs. Despite state budget crises, Alabama has chosen to focus on CTE as a way to help the economy and get people back to work.

T.J. Eyer, Division Administrator for CTE in Montana, discussed the work that Montana is doing around the transition to Programs of Study. Montana is prioritizing all of its Perkins funds to focus on Programs of Study until all programs meet RPOS standards. See his PowerPoint presentation for more information.

Nancy Conneely, Public Policy Manager

By Nancy in Uncategorized
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Connecticut Mentoring Program Connects Youth with Top Helicopter Manufacturer

Tuesday, October 18th, 2011

While business leaders across the nation voice their difficulties in finding highly-skilled employees, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters is closing the skills gap through a program that connects youth with skilled mentors and, oftentimes, rewarding careers.

For years, Teamsters in Stratford, Connecticut, saw a need to connect students in the community to area businesses trying to fill job vacancies. The Sikorsky Corporation, a helicopter plant, was among these businesses. High recruitment costs and other barriers kept the plant from hiring qualified workers. Sikorsky partnered with the local Teamsters group to form the Teamsters/Sikorsky Career Pathways Mentoring Program, a pipeline for students into manufacturing positions.

Through the program, students are selected from eleven area high schools to participate in an eight-week summer internship that provides hands-on work experience facilitated by Teamster mentors. The highly-competitive program only draws from applicants who are enrolled in a Career Technical Education (CTE) program at school.

For the Sikorsky Corporation, the mentorship program provides a new source of skilled workers with fewer recruitment and retention costs. When interns are hired as full-time employees, they require less training and already have work experience and knowledge of the business.

Student interns benefit as well, earning an average of $15 to $17 per hour. For many students, the Career Pathways program has led to a full-time job at Sikorsky. According to one area Teamster, “We brought this program to the company years ago in an effort to promote the advantages of unionized work and to get that message to young people. What we didn’t anticipate at the time was the personal impact the program would have on the students and the mentors who have participated.”

An article in this month’s Teamster magazine, “A Milestone in Youth Development: Career Pathways Mentoring Program Celebrates 10 Years of Excellence,” highlights this successful program. Read more on the program’s website.

Kara Herbertson, Education Policy Analyst

By Kara in News
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Massachusetts Helps Students Explore Future Career Pathways

Friday, July 29th, 2011

Lynnfield, Massachusetts recently conducted a job shadowing program involving 35 area students, through the Lynnfield Business Coalition with participating companies and institutions ranging from Massachusetts General and Children’s Hospital to the Summer Street and Huckleberry Hill Schools in Lynnfield, the Massachusetts State Police, the Boston Breakers (women’s soccer team) and others in fields including law, hospitality and physical therapy.

According to author William Laforme in his article, Annual Job Shadowing Program Benefited 35 Students This Year, the program continues to offer area students the chance to have a valuable learning experience and to get a better idea of what career paths may be for them.
Programs like these allow students to be directly involved in shaping their futures by experiential learning and career exploration, unique features of career technical education.

By Ramona in News
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Career Pathways Innovation Fund Grants Available

Wednesday, March 9th, 2011

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) recently announced the availability of up to $122 million in competitive Career Pathways Innovation Fund grants. The intent of these grants is to continue DOL’s support for community colleges, with a particular focus on career pathway programs implemented by community colleges in partnership with other organizations in the community. This program replaces the Community-Based Job Training Grants.

At least $65 million of the funding will go to projects that focus on the health care sector. The following four types of entities are eligible to apply as lead grantees: Local Workforce Investment Boards, individual community and technical colleges, community college districts, and state community college systems. DOL intends to fund approximately 40 to 50 grants ranging from $1 million to $5 million. Approximately $6.25 million of the total funds available will be reserved to support grantee efforts to conduct a third-party evaluation of the grant activities.

Issue Date: February 28, 2011

Closing Date: March 31, 2011

More information available here.

By Nancy in News, Public Policy
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OVAE Continues “Community Conversations” on CTE

Thursday, February 17th, 2011

During NASDCTEc’s Fall Meeting in October 2010, OVAE kicked off their “Community Conversation” listening sessions on CTE and Perkins. Since that first listening session, OVAE has hosted six other sessions throughout the country, getting feedback from stakeholders on the following questions:

The next two sessions are scheduled to take place in Pennsylvania and Missouri. More information and notes from each session can be found here. You may also provide comments via e-mail at [email protected].

By Nancy in Public Policy
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OVAE Announces Goals for 2011-12

Monday, January 3rd, 2011

Last month the Office of Vocational and Adult Education (OVAE) at the U.S. Department of Education announced that in 2011 they will be focused on the several key areas in an effort to link education and economic opportunity. First, OVAE will work to support rigorous programs of study, funded by the Carl D. Perkins Act, that prepare young people for college and careers through postsecondary credentials completion. Second, they will serve 93 million adults in the U.S. whose basic or below-basic literacy levels limit their career opportunities, through funding from WIA Title II and the Adult Education and Family Literacy Act. And finally, OVAE will improve the capacity of community colleges to meet today’s education and labor market demands.

To achieve these ends, OVAE has developed three goals for 2011–12:

1.      All youths and adults are ready for, have access to, and complete college and career pathways.

2.      All youths and adult students have effective teachers and leaders.

3.      All youths and adult students have equitable access to high-quality learning opportunities on demand.

“Enhancing our approach to career and technical education to prepare students for high-growth careers, we are particularly supportive of rigorous, relevant programs of study that span the secondary and postsecondary systems and that apply classroom-based instruction and work-based learning to meet academic, employability, and technical industry standards. This systemic approach relies on partnerships among K–12 schools, institutions of higher education, and employers.”

By Nancy in Public Policy
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Strengthening Institutions Program Grants Now Available

Monday, July 19th, 2010

The Office of Postsecondary Education at the U.S. Department of Education recently announced a notice inviting applications in the Federal Register for the Strengthening Institutions Program (SIP). SIP provides $17.8 million in discretionary grants to eligible institutions of higher education to help them become self sufficient and expand their capacity to serve low-income students, by providing funds to improve and strengthen the institution’s academic quality, institutional management and fiscal stability. The Department will give priority to applications that address the following areas:

The deadline to apply is August 5, 2010.

By Nancy in Public Policy
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Community College 2.0

Monday, May 10th, 2010

Last week, the Center for American Progress (CAP) released Community College 2.0, a brief that calls on the federal government to help community colleges reach their goals of improving student success and helping train our workforce for the future. According to CAP, new funding is needed for the Departments of Education and Labor to be directed toward community colleges, and used to foster innovation in three key areas:

  1. Faculty and staff professional development to help ensure that these school leaders are prepared to teach integrated developmental, occupational, and academic courses and provide career advising
  2. Data systems that help community colleges better understand student learning and provide students with information to better plan their education
  3. New associate’s degree education models built on a foundation of apprenticeship and career pathways

By Nancy in Public Policy
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Adult Career Pathways Advocacy Tool

Thursday, November 19th, 2009

As the nation grapples with the economic recession, more and more adults are enrolling in some form of education or training class to upgrade or diversify their skills.  Adult career pathways offer a flexible way for adults to gain technical, academic and ESL skills that lead to a degree or credential.

Check out our latest leave behind about adult career pathways that we will use to inform legislators and their staff on the Hill about the link between CTE and adult education.  You can access a copy of it here.  This leave behind explains what an adult career pathway is, the benefits of an adult career pathway, and gives a sampling of adult career pathway programs in the states.

Please feel free to use this document to inform policymakers and legislators in your state about the benefits of CTE!

By Nancy in NASDCTEc Resources, Publications
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